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Outdoor areas for customers and guests- Why you should definitely think about upgrading now.

Updated: Oct 20, 2021

In this interview with landscape architect Bettina Marten, we talk about how important outdoor areas are and why the pandemic situation will increase their importance. Adapted to the new security needs of customers, it is necessary to change: this time in the outside.

The new normal will be outdoors. Not just because spring is just around the corner, but because COVID-19 wants it that way.

Scientifically speaking, we are less likely to contract the virus outdoors. The statistics prove it. There is less danger in contact with others than indoors. According to Gerhard Scheuch, the danger is even zero. For restaurateurs and business owners, this means rethinking. Looking not only forward, but outward. How best to go about upgrading terraces/ gardens/ rooftops/ waiting areas. That's what we're talking about.

1. Bettina, you are half German, half Spanish and grew up here in Barcelona. For the past 15 years, you've been serving your clients in the private sector but also hotels, restaurants and companies with large outdoor spaces. What has changed since Covid-19?

After the initial shock, people are again concerned with the future. A trend that we will be more outdoors, will have to, has also led to rethinking. We work with sustainable methods at bmlandscapes. This connects very well with the new wellness and Mindfulness thinking. People are walking more consciously through nature, opening their eyes, seeing the details, noticing nuances. The birds, the variety of plants and colors in the change of seasons. There is a greater appreciation and attention. Nature is In- the ideal place to recharge.

2. Can you say that "The Power of Now", the power of the moment, is now being actively used to drive landscape change projects? More so than before the crisis? Has the new awareness already arrived that open space is going to become something very special for all of us? For customers, guests and people like you and me?

This is a good point. In the past, value was already placed on a good ambience and thus a feel-good garden, but that was reserved for the premium segment alone. We know chillout, lounge concepts from more luxurious spa and wellness hotels. However, entrepreneurs from all sectors are now starting to rethink and adapt this concept to their own business model. I help them to do so. This trend will be with us for a long time. Even after the pandemic, because it is part of the new customer experience.

3. To avoid the contagion and also the fear of too much closeness in larger groups, e.g. in restaurants, terraces, gardens and rooftops are now the only ways out. A new space for alternatives and creative concepts is emerging. How do you go about effectively helping the industry most affected by the pandemic? Do you have a process?

On the one hand, there are no concrete forecasts when normality will return to 100 percent, but on the other hand, there is a need for action right now. Anyone who waits will have lost out as soon as curfews come into force. And people will start going to restaurants again. I say there are ma